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Kaija Saariaho: Lichtbogen (Score)

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The Full Score of Kaija Saariaho's Lichtbogen For Nine Musicians and Live Electronics. The title for this work stems from the composer's experience of seeing the Northern lights whilst starting work on writing the piece, this experience also shaped the form and language of the piece. Lichtbogen was the first time Saariaho had worked with a computer in the context of purely instrumental music, this new compositional element led to harmonic material being created by analysing short transitions played with a violin and cello, starting with artificial harmonic sounds and ending up with complex multi-phonic sounds. The rhythmic elements of this piece were created using a network of computer programmes, allowing the composer to construct interpolations and transitions for different musical parameters, rhythmic interpolations created through sets of musical patterns that are repeated but each time slightly modified in character. Lichtbogen is the commission of the French ministry of culture and is dedicated to Paul Mefanc. A splendid work for Ensemble (Flute, Percussion, Harp, Piano, 2 Violins, Viola Cello, Double Bass) and Live Electronics by this inimitable Finnish composer.

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